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Subject: Contessa vs. Minister rss

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Denis
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Hi everybody,

sorry if this has been discussed already. I did an unsuccessful search but cannot image being the first who wonders about this.

At Spiel '13, I grabbed two versions of this game. One is the German Pegasus version which seems to be identical (except for the translation, duh) to English edition depicted on the gane's database picture.

The other one is, I think, the "Kanai Factory Limited Edition", an English version with what I have been told is the original Japanese artwork.
As far as I can tell, all cards work exactly the same as their counterparts, although some have different names.
All except one:
The Contessa forces you to discard here when you also hold a 6 or 5 and you obviously also have to discard her when you hold the Princess.
The Minister makes you instantly lose the game if you have him and a 5, 6 or Princess in your hand.

Now, this is easy enough to house-rule to whatever version one prefers but I am curious:

Which version do you prefer?
I have not played a lot so far but in my opinion, the Contessa is more fun. It is less frustrating (drawing Minister out of nowwhere is annoying, especially if you had a Princess and couldn't do anything about that risk) but more importantly, I think Contessa opens up a lot of bluffing opportunities.
I suppose this is what the re-designers where thinking when they changed the card.(?)

What is your opinion?
 
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Scot Ryder
United States
Silver Spring
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Our group prefers the Contessa as it potentially adds an element of bluffing.
 
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Gillum the Stoor
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Zejety wrote:
What were re-designers thinking when they changed the card?

My understanding is that the Minister functionality was the one in the original Japanese game.

When AEG adapted the game for Tempest, they changed the Minister to the Contessa and changed the card's functionality.

They also changed how the Priestess/Handmaiden works. If you have the Priestess (Kanai), you ignore attacks. If you have the Handmaiden (Tempest), you cannot be attacked. That means that, with Tempest, you may have to target yourself if playing Prince (Wizard in Kanai) if all other players are protected by Handmaiden. (With Kanai, you could use Wizard to target a player with Priestess, and nothing would happen.)

Also, the Tempest version specifies that the target of the Prince draws the hidden card (set aside at the beginning of the game) if the deck is empty. The Kanai version doesn't say that about the Wizard.

Finally, the Tempest version has you set aside an addition three cards (face up) at the beginning of the game when you have only two players. The Kanai version doesn't.

I don't know why these changes were made in the Tempest version.
 
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Lee Fisher
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Downingtown
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gillum wrote:
Zejety wrote:
What were re-designers thinking when they changed the card?

My understanding is that the Minister functionality was the one in the original Japanese game.

When AEG adapted the game for Tempest, they changed the Minister to the Contessa and changed the card's functionality.

They also changed how the Priestess/Handmaiden works. If you have the Priestess (Kanai), you ignore attacks. If you have the Handmaiden (Tempest), you cannot be attacked. That means that, with Tempest, you may have to target yourself if playing Prince (Wizard in Kanai) if all other players are protected by Handmaiden. (With Kanai, you could use Wizard to target a player with Priestess, and nothing would happen.)

Also, the Tempest version specifies that the target of the Prince draws the hidden card (set aside at the beginning of the game) if the deck is empty. The Kanai version doesn't say that about the Wizard.

Finally, the Tempest version has you set aside an addition three cards (face up) at the beginning of the game when you have only two players. The Kanai version doesn't.

I don't know why these changes were made in the Tempest version.


The changes were from or at least in conjunction with the original designer, FYI.
 
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Scot Ryder
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Silver Spring
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Correct. All changes were either suggested or approved by the the designer.
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Sam Cook
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I don't know what I would say is better, but after playing it a ton with the Contessa/Countess, I have enjoyed playing the new edition with the Minister.

It makes the lower valued cards much more valuable, since holding onto a prince or king now could also knock you out of the round if you happen to draw the Minister.
 
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James Clarke
United Kingdom
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Zejety wrote:
.....What is your opinion?

My opinion is that they should routinely print all sets with the Minister and Contessa cards included.

Since both are approved by the designer, it would be nice to be able to play an occasional variation.



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Bruce Murphy
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Pyrmont
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Bean-Boy wrote:
Correct. All changes were either suggested or approved by the the designer.


The original designer approved AEG leaving out the critical rules clarifications? Wow.

B>
 
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thepackrat wrote:
Bean-Boy wrote:
Correct. All changes were either suggested or approved by the the designer.


The original designer approved AEG leaving out the critical rules clarifications? Wow.

I believe that I had read that the designer had approved these changes from the original Japanese version to the Tempest version:
- Minister changes to Contessa.
- Player attacked by Prince (Wizard) draws set-aside card if deck empty.

In addition, he might also have approved these (I don't recall):
- Three additional cards set aside (face up) for two-player game.
- Change (described above) to Priest/Handmaiden.

I did not hear that the designer preferred these changes - I just got the impression that he was OK with him.

I didn't hear anything about the designer's preferences regarding the rules clarifications. Personally, I think that helpful instructions were lost when going from AEG's Tempest version to AEG's Kanai version (people have said that the original Japanese rules were clearer than AEG's Kanai version).

But any changes that AEG made when going to their recent Kanai version were quite a while after the changes the made when releasing their Tempest version (which had the substantive changes that the designer reviewed).
 
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Highland Cow wrote:
[They should routinely print all sets with the Minister and Contessa cards included.

Since both are approved by the designer, it would be nice to be able to play an occasional variation.

This would require new art, as there is no Minister illustration in the Tempest them or Contessa illustration in the Kanai theme.
 
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Tina T
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There was a promo card of the Marquise in the Kanai Edition art style at the Japon Brand booth, however, that appears to duplicate the Tempest Contessa, which is, discard this card if you have a total value of 12 in your hand:



So the card art isn't a problem anymore.
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